Many happy returns

VIENNA — On Monday, Austin Cunningham made a triumphant return of sorts to the college he once played for and scored 27 points for his new school (Shepherd) as the Rams overcame a sluggish first half to trim conference rival Ohio Valley, 95-80.

Cunningham played for the Fighting Scots as a freshman before transferring to Shepherd. His 27 points were a career high for the sophomore.

Cunningham was not the only Shepherd player with a career high. Sidney McCray had a career-high 11 rebounds and scored 17 points for his first double-double of the season. Reserve forward Kevin Jones played 20 minutes and had a career-high 13 points and career-high nine rebounds.

Chad Moore recorded his eighth double-double of the season with his 17 points and 12 rebounds.

Shepherd reversed a 44-41 halftime deficit by going 18-for-33 (54.5 percent) from the field in its 54-point second half. The Rams’ pressure defense was more effective in the second half. Ohio Valley had 19 turnovers and Shepherd had only nine.

With Cunningham going 7-for-7 at the foul line, Shepherd was 21-for-28 (75 percent) as a team.

Ashton Brown (27 points) and David Sinickas (20 points) were Ohio Valley’s best scorers. The Fighting Scots were left with a 3-14 overall record and a 2-9 WVIAC mark.

By outscoring the Fighting Scots, 54-36, in the second half, Shepherd improved to 11-5 overall and 8-4 in the conference.

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